UNAIDS in Myanmar

image will followSeminar on collaboration for HIV response with sex workers in Myanmar, 21-12 September 2015, Nay Pyi Taw" (UNAIDS). Photo: UNAIDS

The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations—UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, UNDP, UNFPA, UNODC, UN Women, ILO, UNESCO, WHO and the World Bank—and works closely with global and national partners towards ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.

UNAIDS Myanmar is a critical advocate for the HIV response in Myanmar and supports the Government of Myanmar in its lead role to coordinate the HIV response through the National AIDS Programme of the Ministry of Health.

Myanmar is one of six UNAIDS Fast-Track countries in the Asia and Pacific region. Fast-Track approach is critical to establishing the momentum necessary to reach the Sustainable Development Goals target as well as to end the AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030. Such an extraordinary achievement will require an extraordinary and urgent effort—fully funding and front-loading investment in comprehensive HIV responses and intensifying the focus on the populations and locations in greatest need. After Thailand and Cambodia, Myanmar is the 3rd highest HIV prevalence among 10 Asian countries.

HIV Epidemic in Myanmar

Myanmar has a concentrated HIV epidemic, which ranks among the most severe in the Asia and Pacific region:

  • In 2015, 215,312 people were living with HIV (adults aged 15 and above). It is estimated that 11,005 people newly infected and 9,253 AIDS related deaths occurred (adults aged 15 and above) confirming the need to strengthen the response to HIV
  • While HIV prevalence among adults 15 and above has declined between 2003 and 2011, trends have remained largely unchanged since 2011.  Newly available data show that national HIV prevalence among key populations (People who inject drugs (PWID), Men who have sex with men (MSM) and Female Sex workers (FSW)) is on the rise and significantly higher than the national average prevalence (0.6%). 
  • HIV prevalence among key populations is estimated at: 28.5% in PWID; 14.6% in FSW and 11.6% in MSM. (AEM 5.41, 2016)

UNAIDS Myanmar aims to:

  • Create favorable legal and policy context for HIV responses
  • Strengthen health, non-health, and community systems
  • Develop a strong evidence base through strategic information, monitoring and evaluation and research
  • Ensure integration of HIV in social, political, and economic agendas
  • Assess financial needs and gaps and mobilizes resources for HIV response

Do you know that:

UNAIDS supports the Government of Myanmar's National AIDS Programme with:


Monitoring, Evaluation and Research

  • Achievements - Production of the Annual Progress Report, Mid Term Review, evaluation of the National Strategic Plan on HIV/AIDS (2011-2016);  and other reports, supports conducting IBBS / PSE and other surveillance surveys;

Strategic Planning

  • Development of strategic and policy framework, including costing of plans
  • Achievements –Development of the National Strategic Plan on HIV/AIDS (2016-2020) and Global Fund Concept note (350 Millions) in cooperation with a broad range of stakeholders
  • The National Strategic Plan on HIV/AIDS 2016-2020 embracing the Fast Track targets, presents a timely window of opportunity to End AIDS as a public health threat.  If Myanmar meets the NSP fast track targets, the country will avert a total of 20,060 new infections and 13,902 lives of HIV/AIDS related death from 2016 to 2020. Number of new infections per year will drop to 3308 in 2020 from 11,073 in 2015. This will significantly contribute to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in Myanmar.

Technical Assistance

  • Support for scaling-up prevention, treatment, care and support, including expansion and decentralization of HCT and ART services as well as the integration of HIV within the health sector
  • Achievements –
    o    ART coverage among all PLHIV went up from 24% in 2012 to 47.3% in 2015
    o    63% expansion of ART health facilities (from 147 in 2013 to 240 in 2015)
    o    Sharp increase in the numbers of needles and syringes distributed per PWID per year (from 147 in 2013 to 223 in 2015.)

Advocacy and Enabling Environment

  • Support for reviewing and amending laws, policies, and practices to help foster an enabling environment for a health, gender and human rights-based HIV response, including the elimination of stigma and discrimination.
  • Achievements–  
    o    Amendment of the 1917 Burmese Excise Act to repeal the sections related to the illegal possession of needle and syringe;
    o    Legal review of the 1993 Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances law in cooperation with MoHA, UNODC and partners  
    o    Review of the Suppression of Prostitution Act with partners,
    o    Stigma index survey conducted with HIV networks,
    o    CBOs, INGOs and MoH trained on HIV and human rights,
    o    200 journalists and over 550 operational police and staff from the general administration department sensitized about HIV among key populations.

Coordination among Partners

  • Organization management among UN agencies, INGOs, NGOs, civil society and community partners, and private sector

Resource Mobilization

  • Achievements: Investment Cases for HIV in Myanmar and Resource Needs analyses have secured considerable external and domestic resources for the scale-up of HIV prevention, testing and treatment.

Community mobilization

  • UNAIDS builds and supports the organizational development and technical capacity of community-based organizations and identifies civil society champions to represent their constituencies. UNAIDS has closely collaborated with community organizations for legal framework review and reform, as well as community mobilization events such as World AIDS Day; Candlelight Memorial; and International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.
  • Achievements – community champions trained and able to engage further in advocacy/dialogue with Government stakeholders, Parliamentarians, media community

Myanmar Health Sector Coordinating Committee (M-HSCC)

  • Myanmar Health Sector Coordinating Committee (M-HSCC) was established by the Health Minister as the Health Sector Working Group. UNAIDS serves as the Secretariat of the M-HSCC. The main objective of M-HSCC is to strengthen coordination and development effectiveness, and to provide technical, financial and strategic oversight of health sector activities. M-HSCC oversees 7 Technical Strategy Groups. MHSCC comprises of 35 members from government, national and international NGOs, civil society including people living with diseases, private sector, multi- and bilateral partners. Learn more at www.myanmarhscc.org